John Key has seized the flag debate from apolitical limbo and made a run once again into Labour's unguarded territory.
He's taking a gamble on it, taking fire from the more conservative elements of National's wide church, such as the RSA curmudgeons. But their numbers are small, and where else can they go? Even Winston Peters has been making positive noises about the subject.
Key has stolen the march on Labour with one of Helen Clark's old electioneering prongs of National Identity. Just like last week's Super Teacher announcement, it's as if National has sifted through Labour's policy remits and nicked what they could live with. The Nats are pre-emptively neutralising all of Labour's potential in-roads. The body politic have their hearts and minds fed with the illusion of incremental progress.
If you didn't know, I'm all in favour of a real NZ flag, as opposed to one hastily patched together by British seamen. For that matter, I reckon every household should have its own flag. United Tribes indeed.